The lights are out in Bankok... - Let Us Be Saints!
Let Us Be Saints!
Here it is...the final three days here in the Eternal City.  We are Roman Catholics, studying the Catholic Faith IN ROME!  We just spent four months in a foreign country, in the heart of the Church, with an incredible community of young men and women that have truly become family.  I cannot count all the blessings God has given me this will take a lifetime to unpack them all. 

Last night we went to people-watch in Piazza Navona one last time.  We just went to St. Peter's for the last time, saw Papa Bene and received his blessing once more at the Angelus, and ate our last smorgasbord meal downstairs (pooling our resources to have lunch).  Tomorrow we will make our last trek to the Ang where we will take our last final exam.  Yes, so many "lasts."  It is always difficult for good things to come to an end, but this is necessary.  We live in a finite world, where everything good that we experience is only passing.  It is only a taste, a fragment of the goodness we will experience for all eternity when we come face to face with Goodness Itself! 

Yes, we have climbed this was an arduous climb of preparations for this semester...and the mountaintop experience was very sweet.  But just like Christ at the Transfiguration, we too must come down from this peak, back to the "real world."  We are not the same as when we stepped on that plane four months ago...we are changed persons and we must return home to change our world!  It will not be easy, for life in the States has more or less remained constant while we are very different.  But through God's grace we will get back in the swing of things and our semester here will continue to bear fruit there! 

You are probably wondering about the title of this entry...the lights are out in Bankok.  It is largely a Bernardi inside-joke that I will try to explain a bit.  The word for bathroom here is "bagno" but we jokingly call it "bango" instead.  One of our Bernardians wrote a note to Thanos telling him that "the lights are out in bango K" but apparently the last two words got mushed together and someone else read it to be "the lights are out in Bankok!"  Why we would be telling Thanos this tidbit about Thailand is beyond me!  ;-) 

It is a funny story though and even was one of the words in our game of melt-down (combination of Catch Phrase, Password, and Charades) the other night.  But I also think it can be a metaphor for our current situation. Very soon, the lights will be going out for Bernardi 2011...we will all be moving out of the house on Wednesday and going our separate ways.  It will be hard to say goodbye to those members of our Bernardi family who don't go to UST or are graduating, and it will never be the same since we will never all live under the same roof again.  But God allows our hearts to be torn so as to make room to love more... Yes, though the lights are going out here, they will be going on wherever we end up.  We will all go and be lights to our St. Thomas campus and the other universities we represent.  We will go and be lights in our future careers and vocations.  Together we will journey toward the Light of the World, Christ himself!  Praise God!   

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